Report: Japan Orders Toyota to Investigate Prius Brakes

The Japanese Ministry of Transportation has now asked Toyota to investigate its new third-generation Prius model after complaints from owners of potentially faulty brakes. This news comes as Toyota currently has recalls out for millions of vehicles (not including the current Prius) which are mostly for two separate recalls. The first recall for 5.1 million vehicles is for floor mats that can cause the accelerator pedal to stick, while the second is for 2.3 million vehicles where Toyota has now said that over time the accelerator pedal could become stuck or slow to return to its “off” position.

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Tokyo Auto Salon 2010: Gazoo Racing and G Sports Show Off Concepts in Tokyo
Tokyo Auto Salon 2010: DAMD If There's Another Modified Prius at TAS

Damned if we report another body kit manufacturer but DAMD’s Styling Effect is highly worth mentioning. (Groan… we know). DAMD showed off a selection of its latest products at the Tokyo Auto Salon, with two new aero kits for Subaru products as well as one for, you guessed it, the Toyota Prius.

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Tokyo Auto Salon 2010: Branew Debuts 370Z Aero Kit, Should Stick to Luxury Cars

While not as well known in North America as VIP tuners like Wald International or Junction Produce, Branew is a Japanese tuning powerhouse specializing in various luxury and tuning markets including Mercedes-Benz, Lexus, Nissan, Bentley, Hummer, Porsche and Land Rover. The big buzz leading up to the 2010 Tokyo Auto Salon from Branew was the debut of their 370Z kit. Sadly, we don’t have a time machine to go back to before we saw this. We just feel so bad for the Z.

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Tokyo Auto Salon 2010: Tommy Kaira Eco-Spo Aerodynamics for the Toyota Prius and Honda Insight

Not to be left behind with all the other Japanese aftermarket manufacturers that have taken to the trend of modifying hybrid/green cars, Tommy Kaira not only impressed with its GT-R at the 2010 Tokyo Auto Salon, but with its Prius and Insight offerings too. Earlier this month both vehicles were released to the public and onto the Internet but this was our first opportunity to get up close with the vehicles in person and we’re quite impressed.

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Tokyo Auto Salon 2010: ASI Green Toyota Prius

Seen at the booth of wheel manufacturer RAYS Engineering at the 2010 Tokyo Auto Salon was a nicely tuned Prius by ASI. Called the ASI Green Prius, this car is part of a new line of ASI tuning kits aimed at hybrid models. Currently it also includes a kit for the Honda Insight.

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Report: Toyota Shelves Plans for Entry-Level Prius I Model

Remember back when Honda announced pricing for its Insight hybrid would start at under $20,000 and Toyota, in a bid to compete, said it would offer the Prius for just $21,000? Several months later, and the launch of the Prius II, III, IV and V and Toyota is now saying the Prius I isn’t likely to ever see production – not for average consumers anyway.

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Report: Prius Could Supplant Camry as Toyota's Top Seller Says Company Exec

The Prius could surpass the Camry as Toyota’s best selling model in the U.S. in the next ten years says the head of Toyota’s sales department. Toyota Motor Sales boss Jim Lentz made the comments, stating that he sees the Prius gaining ground, rather than the Camry (the top selling passenger car in the U.S. for 11 of the past 12 years) shrinking.

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Report: Toyota Officially Confirms Prius Plug-In Hybrid Concept for Frankfurt Debut

After much speculation, Toyota has finally confirmed that a concept version of the Prius Plug-In Hybrid will appear at the Frankfurt Auto Show next week.

Designed to take on the Chevy Volt, there is no word on when full public sales of the Prius PHV start, while the Volt is scheduled for sale in early 2011. “Although we like to be first to market with these technologies, it’s more important that we are best to market,” said Irv Miller, TMS group vice president, environmental and public affairs. “This demonstration program will ensure that the vehicles we bring to market will not just meet customer expectations, but exceed them.”

As for the numbers, they don’t sound all that competitive, with an expected electric-only range of 12 miles, as opposed to the 40 miles claimed by General Motors. Using Toyota’s Hybrid Synergy Drive and lithium-ion batteries, Toyota says the Prius PHV will be able to reach highway speeds on pure electric power. Engineers at the Japanese automaker are also looking beyond lithium batteries for future energy solutions.

Later this year Toyota will deliver 500 Prius PHV vehicles, 150 of which will be sold in the United States.

Official release after the jump:

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Report: Toyota Dealers Price Gouging on 2010 Prius Models

Several reports of price gouging on the new 2010 Prius have been reported at Toyota dealerships across the country.

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Report: Toyota Forced to Slow Prius Production as Battery Supplier Can't Keep Up With Demand

The 2010 Prius has been a popular car for Toyota since it first went on sale several months ago, but the pace of sales will slow considerably over the next few months. The reason for the lull is that the Prius’s battery supplier, Panasonic EV, can’t keep up with the demand.

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Report: Honda Fast-Tracking List of Updates to Improve Insight

According to the U.K.’s Autocar, Honda is fast-tracking a list of updates for the Insight originally scheduled for a mid-cycle makeover that’s still several years off. The focus of the changes will be to further improve fuel-economy, which while impressive at 40/43 mpg (city/highway), lags significantly behind the 2010 Prius and its 51/48 mpg rating.

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Toyota Struggles to Keep up With Demand for 2010 Prius

While Toyota’s sales may be suffering as a whole, sales of the all-new 2010 Prius are well above expectations. In fact, the Japanese automaker is having trouble keeping up with demand – something which may result in lengthy waiting lists for the third-generation of Toyota’s successful hybrid.

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Toyota Prius Plug-In Hybrids Will Hit the Streets This Year

Toyota has announced that it will lease 500 plug-in hybrid-electric Prius models starting this year. These will be the first plug-in version of the Prius on the road and will feature new lithium-ion battery packs, which hold more energy than the conventional nickel-metal hydride batteries used in other hybrid systems.

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Toyota Prius Is The Top Selling Car in Japan in May

The all-new Toyota Prius was the most popular selling car in Japan for the month of May, according to numbers just released by the Japan Automobile Dealers Association.

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